Welcome to Super Bowl week. On Sunday,
Tom Brady
and the
New England Patriots
will face off against the
Atlanta Falcons
and their historically great offense in Super Bowl LI.

If the Patriots win, they’ll secure their fifth championship in the Bill Belichick era and Brady will further entrench his spot atop the all-time quarterback leaderboard. Furthermore, the Patriots will experience the added benefit of receiving the trophy from commissioner Roger Goodell, who once docked them a million bucks, a first-round pick, and suspended Brady four game because the Patriots allegedly used under-inflated footballs in a 45-7 win.

If the Falcons win, they’ll secure their first championship.
Matt Ryan
‘s entire 2016 season will have to go down as one of the greatest single seasons ever. Dan Quinn will forever have the job security that comes with a Super Bowl ring. And Arthur Blank will undoubtedly dance (again).

The following list is intended to get you primed for Super Bowl LI. So, without further delay, here are 51 things to know about Super Bowl LI.

51. Brady can become the second-oldest quarterback to win a Super Bowl

Peyton Manning
became the oldest QB to win a Super Bowl a year ago when he did it at 39 — just about six weeks shy of his 40th birthday. Brady is 39 now, but he won’t turn 40 until August 3, so Manning will still own this record even if the Patriots win.

50. Brady can win a record fifth Super Bowl as a quarterback

On the other hand, Brady has Manning beat in a more important category: He’s currently tied at four Super Bowl wins with Joe Montana and Terry Bradshaw.

49. Brady can snag a record fourth Super Bowl MVP

Montana also has three.

48. Dan Quinn has coached in three of the last four Super Bowls

He served as the defensive coordinator when the
Seattle Seahawks
beat the
Denver Broncos
in Super Bowl XLVIII and lost to the Patriots in Super Bowl XLIX. He took the Falcons’ job before the 2015 season and he’s already back in the Super Bowl.

That’s not bad.

All Dan Quinn does is coach in Super Bowls.

47. The Patriots will wear white

It’s a super lucky color:

The Falcons will wear red, by the way.

46. Ryan has started two games against the Patriots

In two career starts against a Bill Belichick-coached defense, Ryan went 51 of 82 (62.2 percent) for 620 yards (7.56 YPA), two touchdowns, one interception, and an 88.5 passer rating. The Falcons lost both games.

45. Brady has started four games against the Falcons

In four career starts against the Falcons, Brady went 88 of 131 (67.2 percent) for 1,193 yards (9.11 YPA), nine touchdowns, one pick, and a 115.7 passer rating. The Patriots won all four games.

44. Julio Jones is amazing in the postseason

This shouldn’t come as a shock: Arguably the game’s best receiver is awesome in the playoffs.

In five career playoff starts, Jones has averaged 110.4 yards and a touchdown per game. With his 180-yard, two-touchdown outing in the Falcons’ win over the
Green Bay Packers
, he set a playoff record.

43. Belichick against top WRs

Then again, Belichick has a pretty decent track record against receivers like Jones. Via NESN (their methodology is explained in the link):

The Patriots have only allowed one playoff touchdown to any first-team All-Pro receiver standing 6 foot or taller. The Patriots have only allowed two 100-yard games to such players. Muhammad caught four passes on 10 targets for 140 yards with a touchdown in Super Bowl XXXVIII, and Owens caught nine passes on 14 targets for 122 yards in Super Bowl XXXIX. The Patriots held Harrison, Wayne, Holt, Brown and Rice to games under 50 yards.

The Patriots are 10-2 in those contests.

Give Belichick two weeks to take away a team’s best weapon and that’s exactly what he’ll do.

42. The Patriots’ record with the Super Bowl referee is decent

The Patriots are 7-2 in games refereed by Carl Cheffers in the past 10 years, according to Christopher Price.

41. Brady has more Super Bowl experience than the entire Falcons’ roster


40. More people bet on the
Cleveland Browns
to win the Super Bowl than the Falcons

According to ESPN, only the
Tennessee Titans
had fewer Super Bowl bets than the Falcons in the preseason.


Matt Ryan and the Falcons have proven all the doubters wrong so far.

39. The game will be played at NRG Stadium in Houston at 6:30 p.m. ET on Feb. 5

Here’s how you can watch on TV. Here’s how you can watch without cable.

38. Lady Gaga will perform at halftime

We ranked all of the Super Bowl halftime performances here if you wanna jump from one listicle to another.


Lady Gaga is bringing her best poker face to the Super Bowl.

37. Luke Bryan will sing the national anthem

Last year, that honor went to Lady Gaga. This year, it belongs to Bryan, a country star (I’m told).

36. Belichick will face his former employees

Thomas Dimitroff, the Falcons’ general manager, worked for the Patriots as a scout in 2002 and as the director of college scouting from 2003-07.

Scott Pioli, the Falcons’ assistant general manager, worked for the Patriots from 2000-2008. For the majority of his time in New England, he served as vice president of player personnel.

35. The Browns will be there in more than just spirit

Whenever you think you’ve found the most Browns thing ever, you find a better example of their ineptitude.

Of course.

A photo posted by CBS Sports (@cbssports) on

34. Our preseason Super Bowl ‘Madden’ simulation might’ve nailed it

Before the season, my colleague Will Brinson ran a Madden sim of the 2016 season. The sim predicted that the Falcons would win the Super Bowl:

Super Bowl

Falcons beat
Pittsburgh Steelers

This is the beauty of fake football. Anything can happen? I’m not saying I will literally eat one of my shoes if the four teams in the championship games are the Steelers,
Jacksonville Jaguars
, Falcons and
New Orleans Saints
but, actually eff it, I’ll eat a shoe if that happens. Screenshot it and hold me to it.

As far as I know, Brinson has not eaten a shoe … yet.

33. Alabama and Rutgers are equals

After the Falcons and Patriots clinched their spots in the Super Bowl, Tom Fornelli took a look at the college programs that are the most represented in the Super Bowl. This won’t come as a shock, but Alabama is tied for the lead with five players split between the Patriots and Falcons. This will come as a shock: Rutgers is tied with Alabama.

Here’s the top-3:

  • Alabama: 5
  • Rutgers: 5
  • LSU and Stanford: 4 each

32. No. 1 offense vs. No. 1 defense

The Falcons offense finished first in the NFL by scoring 33.8 points per game. The Patriots defense finished first in the NFL by allowing 15.6 points per game.

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